Music to induce serenity. Charles Amirkhanian talks with Joanna Brouk, a Berkeley composer whose interests lies in the sounds that can be perceived by listening to “impurities” within larger tones. These impurities, called overtones, are utilized in the making of the six pieces heard here. Ms. Brouk modulates her voice with an synthesizer in three of these pieces. In another she uses repeated tones in the low range of a grand piano. And in two others, she strokes a gong repeatedly to produce a trance like intensity, enabling the listener to explore the overtones of the gong. One piece, “Leaf” utilizes the three words, opening, closing, and turning, in a subtle abstraction which is very hypnotic. With her voice dripping with inner calm, Brouk describes the spiritual qualities she finds within these peaceful sounds, and how music. like a soft summer day or a sparkling brook, can release one’s soul and free one’s mind, if you only pay attention and listen.
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